Huge companies like FedEx , UPS and FLOWERS® all starting using vanity 800 numbers years ago. If vanity numbers didn’t work great do you really believe these companies would continue to use them? Not a chance.
Here’s a quick test… what is the 800 number for FTD Florists? Did you know it was 800-SEND-FTD? Good, but not as good as the memorable 1-800-FLOWERS!
Avoid Number Hybrids
1-800-666-EYES is nowhere near as valuable as 1-800-CONTACTS. People can remember words, not numbers. A hybrid quickly becomes 1-800-something-EYES to the potential customer. A hybrid might be easier to acquire, but try to get creative with a full word.
Don’t limit yourself to 7 Digits. A lot of good vanity numbers use extra digits (notably 1-800-MATTRESS “and leave the last S off for savings!”)
You’ll need to get creative. If you have a Dish Network installation business, you might start with a core word like DISH and add prefixes or suffixes to get a memorable number (e.g. 1-800-GET-DISH, 1-800-NEW-DISH, 1-800-DISH-NOW).
800 & 888 vs. 877 & 866
Whenever possible always try to establish yourself with an 800 vanity number. It is by far what the public is familiar with. (Although these are getting tougher and tougher to acquire!) When that is impossible, 888 is the second choice. Although not as good as 800, it is still better then 877 and 866.
Vanity Name Choice
Select a number that either spells out your industry (800- GOLFERS, 1-800-HEARING, 1-800-INSURANCE) or describes/reinforces the advertising message you are trying to convey (Fabulous Cruise Vacations: 1-800-FABULOUS). Avoid spelling out your company name unless you are sure everyone knows your company name. Stewarts Lawn Care is much better off with 1-800- LAWN CARE then 1-800-STEWART (which could be almost anything – e.g. Stewart’s Root Beer which more than 60 locations in NJ, MD, KY, OH, WV, and PA.)
The number should easy to spell. Avoid the use the letters “Q” or “Z” as they have only recently been added to newer phones keypads.
Don’t be selective where you use your new vanity number. Make it the front door to your business for everything you do that the public sees or hears. There is a reason why every thing 1-800-GOT-JUNK does places the 1-800-GOT-JUNK number on it (website, trucks, etc.) Same goes for Fed Ex with 1-800-GO FEDEX, they know what a value it is to them.
By following these simple tips you are well on your way to excellent advertising execution with a vanity toll free number!